The Hardest Question

Richard Prather“Good morning, sir. Welcome to Baked-Basic-Goods-101! Luckily, if you are a chocolate connoisseur, our death-by-chocolate muffins are 75% off today. What can I get for you?”

The customer replied, “I am not sure; you have so many great items to choose from. Can you give me a second please?”

“Yes, not a problem, sir.” However, the cashier noticed how those seconds quickly turned into annoying minutes…she had to suggest, “sir, if you don’t mind, there are others in line waiting and ready to order.” Indeed, several orders were placed within seconds of each other.

The others made selections as if there was nothing to it. As the indecisive customer’s eyes were overwhelmed and amazed by the quick decision making skills of the other customers, his stomach growled ”feed me anything” but his wallet cautioned “nothing over $7.25 buddy.”

As one customer was walking out, he asked the indecisive customer, “first time here?” Frustrated, he smiled with a nod. The experienced bakery customer encouraged him, “If you have to start somewhere, go entry-level…you know, their signature items. And keep in mind when you come back that choices always get easier.”

" "The cashier politely gave the customer another opportunity to order, “What would you like, sir?”

Realizing he didn’t have a good working knowledge of the other items he stated, “I will have the 75% off death-by-chocolate muffins please.”

As the cashier looked down to write, she asked, “Can I have a first and last name for this order?”

“Yes, first name, ‘Job’ and last name, ‘Seeker.’”

“Wise choice, Mr. Seeker. I’m glad you decided not to give up and walk out. Letting me know what you really want can be the hardest thing to do at times.”

Happy with his order in hand, Mr Job Seeker stated as he walked out the door, “Yes, I agree. With so many options to choose from, I started to bite off more than I could chew…get it? The cashier gave him a smile…as if to say, ‘I heard that joke before, not so funny.’

HERE ARE SOME USEFUL TIPS FOR MR. JOB SEEKER

  1. “I will take anything” is not a great way to start your conversation with your employment counselor (EC). Not having a focus in your job search can easily lead it off track.
  2. Please understand that an EC won’t know what you’re looking for until you’ve told them. So remember to plan ahead so you can be ready to focus on a job search that’s right for you. This also may be important since there will undoubtedly be others wishing to discuss the same thing with an EC.
  3. Be ready to discuss your work experience as well as your desire for what type of job you would like to do. There would be no need to discuss skills you have but no longer desire, unless of course those skills are transferable.
  4. Having a focus can help you streamline your job search. For example, if you no longer desire working in child care or wish not to work the graveyard shift, you can format your job search to avoid those types of jobs.
    A focused job search will help you make quick decisions that are often required at a job fair speaking with several employers in a short amount of time.
  5. If you’re not sure exactly what type of job you desire, having at least an idea of the industry you’d like to work in and a timeframe with which to work in will be a good starting point.

Richard Prather is a bi-lingual Regional Facilitator for Workforce Solutions. Richard combines 3 years of experience at Workforce Solutions with his Master’s degree, diverse experiences traveling abroad, and commitment to excellence in customer service to provide training to both customers and staff throughout the 13 counties of the Gulf Coast Region.

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